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CD Review

 

 

Wayne Bergeron - Plays Well With Others
Concord Records
           Journeyman trumpeter Wayne Bergeron acquits himself well on this release and shows why he is one of the most in-demand trumpet players in the world. While not well known due to his tendency to be recorded as a sideman and studio player more than a leader, Bergeron has released an album which might jump start a second career for him as a recording artist in his own right. He more than holds his own on his horn and has a sweet tone many other trumpet players would envy. Hence, the decision by the smart folks at Concord to give Bergeron his first crack at being a leader on CD and showcase his talents so the uninitiated can hear this talented studio player.
           Featuring his own band (which he has lead for many years as a popular nightclub act) and a special guest appearance from Maynard Ferguson on the wonderful "Maynard and Waynard," Bergeron concocts an album filled with his interpretations of jazz standards. As a trumpeter, I would not place Bergeron on the level of a Miles Davis simply because he doesn't seem to be forging his own style as much as just making exciting versions of popular jazz standards with the rare original tossed in here or there. Not that Bergeron doesn't have the talent or facility, however. Bergeron is quite adept on his horn and has a wonderful technique and skills to spare. It's just a different mindset. A better comparison would be Doc Severinson who, like Bergeron does now, had a breathtaking technique he decided to use in more of a traditional vein instead of a groundbreaking one. What Bergeron's album amounts to, then, is one hell of a fun listen. Bergeron's band cooks and is tight as hell. Not only a marvelous player, Bergeron also shows a lot of talent at bandleading.
           This album would appeal most to fans of great trumpeters as Bergeron ably holds his own with the higher echelon of titans who choose to play that horn. While there is going to be nothing groundbreaking here, this is an album one could throw on at a party or an event and have people start feeling real good about the music and having a great time. It is an album with an infectious, fun spirit with the added bonus of containing some great playing from Bergeron and everyone else involved. This is well worth any jazz fan's money. - Scott Homewood

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